The economic co-operation between Ghana and China witnessed rapid growth with the trade volume increasing from $5.98 billion in 2016 to $6.67 billion in 2017, representing a growth of 11.67 per cent, Dr Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, the Minister of Business Development, has said.
Additionally, the Chinese Foreign Direct Investment in Ghana reached $3.2 billion at the same time, with 793 registered Chinese investments.
“It is within the foregoing context that we acknowledge the enormous contribution of the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the numerous Chinese companies operating in various sectors of our economy, to support Ghana’s socio-economic development,” he emphasised.
Dr Awal made the remarks at a reception to mark the 69th Anniversary of the People’s Republic of China and the 2018 Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Beijing Summit Briefing, in Accra on Thursday.
The event was graced by Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, members of the Council of State, Ministers of State, Members of Parliament and the Diplomatic Community as well as the Chinese Community in Ghana.
The gathering was treated to a medley of Ghanaian and Chinese music by the Rose Band led by Joseph Huang and Nana Serwah, complemented by various dance performances as well as the display of Chinese culture.
Dr Awal, on behalf of government, conveyed a congratulatory message to the Chinese President, Mr Xi Jinping and the good people of China for achieving that important milestone in their nationhood.
He believed the future celebrations would witness greater heights in the relations between the two countries on the basis of the principles of solidarity, mutual trust and respect.
“I wish to take this opportunity to express our appreciation to the Government and People of China for the warm reception accorded President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his delegation during his State Visit to China and his participation in the 2018 Forum on China-Africa Co-operation (FOCAC) Beijing Summit from the 31st August to September 5, 2018,”Dr Awal stated.
The Minister acknowledged the efforts of the Founding Fathers of Ghana and China, whose visionary leadership led to the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two sovereign nations in 1960.
He said over the years, the two countries had enhanced their bilateral and multilateral relations, as well as at the levels of South-South Co-operation, saying that, the brotherly relations had withstood the test of time and grown from strength to strength.
Dr Awal lauded Chinese Government’s commitment to support Ghana’s fight against illegal small-scale mining, popularly called “galamsey”, and assurance to increase the number of scholarships awarded to Ghanaian students, as well as re-affirming support for the ongoing Chinese assisted projects such as the Jamestown Fishing Harbour, the Cape Coast Sports Stadium and the construction of 1,000 boreholes.
In addition, Chinese President Xi Jinping also pledged to encourage Chinese businesses to invest in Ghana, and to participate actively in President Akufo-Addo’s flagship programmes such as the ‘One District, One Factory’ and ‘Planting for Food and Jobs’ towards the realisation of building a ‘Ghana beyond aid’.
He further underscored the Chinese government’s commitment to support the country’s infrastructural development, particularly, in the development of railways, through the Belt and Road Initiative, which Ghana had signed onto already, as well as other initiatives announced at the FOCAC Summit.
Mr Shi Ting Wang, the Chinese Ambassador to Ghana, on his part, observed that the China-Ghana Co-operation was the epitome of China-Africa Co-operation, saying that, China always regarded Ghana as a reliable friend and a good partner for economic development.
He thus, pledged the Chinese government’s commitment to maintain and enhance the good bilateral relations to higher heights that would mutually benefit the two nations.